David Wilkerson recognized God was calling a significant number of redeemed and enthusiastic Teen Challenge graduates to the ministry. He also realized that with training, they could have an amazing impact on those from similar backgrounds and those living in needy drug and gang-infested communities.
To meet this need, Rev. Wilkerson established the Teen Challenge Ministry Institute at his Texas headquarters. The school successfully trained hundreds of students who are today in leadership ministry positions. He closed that school in 1980, and to ensure its continuance, he assisted with the establishment of that ministry here in Southern California in 1981.
- Mission Statement
Teen Challenge Ministry Institute equips workers for the harvest to serve the church locally and around the world through evangelism, discipleship, and leadership training.
After graduation, 80%–90% of Teen Challenge Ministry Institute students go on to serve as pastors, missionaries, teachers and lay leaders. Here at TCMI we are convinced that some of the greatest works of God are still to come as they are conceived in the hearts of our committed students.
- Program Information
The ministry model of TCMI consists of three general tracks:
- Urban Ministries: Prepare students to serve in a church or lay leader settings
- Missions: Facilitate the call to global and cross-cultural ministry
- Teen Challenge Staff: For effective ministry at Teen Challenge centers within the TC USA network
Classroom education includes courses in biblical studies, doctrine, hermeneutics, evangelism, missions, intercultural dynamics, and pastoral care. Courses are recognized by the Assemblies of God as fulfilling most of the educational requirements for the first level of the ministerial credentialing process.
Experiential training includes evangelism, pastoral and lay leader duties, and cross-cultural missions.
- Community Outreach
At TCMI, we believe that our mission is not only to the students in each of our centers but also to the communities in which we live. Our community outreach activities focus on:
- Evangelism: Homeless, skid row, children, youth, families
- Compassion: Invalids, food distribution
- Mentoring/tutoring: Learning center, youth
Nick Garife entered Los Angeles Teen Challenge in August 1991. After graduating the program, he enrolled at Teen Challenge Ministry Institute (TCMI) and graduated in March 1995.
Nick was hired by Teen Challenge of Southern California as an entry level staff member in March of 1995, became Assistant Director at TCMI in South Gate, CA, and was promoted to Director in 2004.
Nick has the privilege of mentoring his leadership team and seeing men and women discover their God-given talents to impact the world for Jesus Christ. Nick is front lines in overseeing the training and development of men and women who have a call of God on their life to serve full-time at Teen Challenge centers, other ministries and churches around the world.
The mission of TCMI is to equip workers for the harvest to serve the church locally and around the world through evangelism, discipleship, and leadership training. Since 1986, TCMI has sent out over 600 graduates into the harvest field.
Nick also serves as an Ordained Minister with the Assemblies of God and has a passion for families in his community to discover God’s love. Nick Garife and his wife, Lisa (also a TCMI graduate), have been married since 1998 and have four children and a granddaughter.
- Contact Information
Teen Challenge Ministry Institute
P.O. Box 739
South Gate, CA 90280
- Apply Now
If you feel that God has called you to ministry and you would like to apply to TCMI, please download the application materials below. These PDF forms may be filled out electronically or you may print them and complete on paper (please use pen).
PDF files require the free Adobe Reader. You can download it here.